10 magic brain tricks
Last updated: Tuesday, July 07, 2015
Alzheimer's just plain terrifies us. But new research is revealing ways we can literally grow our brain cells and keep this dread disease at bay.
For many people, gradually losing your mind is the worst fate imaginable – more fearful than cancer or heart attack; more fearful, even, than death itself.
The book, 100 Simple Things You Can Do To Prevent Alzheimer's and Age-related Memory-loss, by Jean Carper, a health journalist who discovered that she is genetically at high risk of developing the disease, offers something of an antidote to that fear.
There is no cure and no definitive prevention (more correctly the book's title should be 100 simple things you can do to help prevent Alzheimer's), but the flurry of research into the disease in recent decades has given us what Carper calls a “grab bag” of tips to stave it off as long as possible.
The following are just 10 of the valuable tips that Carper offers up in her book:
1. Do something new
A new thought or experience stimulates nerve cell growth and literally “grows your brain”, shoring it up against the potential onslaught of Alzheimer’s. Not only should we keep ourselves active mentally and physically, we should try new thoughts and activities – especially those that challenge us. Learn a new word or a whole new language. If you’ve always been useless at reading a map or doing long division, give it a go. Travel to new places, meet new people, do things differently. Embrace novelty in all its forms. Stretch yourself.
2. Check your thyroid
Hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism have been linked to increased risk for Alzheimer’s. Low thyroid is particularly common in middle-aged women, so have your thyroid checked at 40. Both men and women of any age should be tested if they experience symptoms of abnormal thyroid.
3. Get a h ... Read more